© Reuters. W. Africa Crude-Shell declares Bonny force majeure, but no lift yet to diffs
LONDON, May 17 (Reuters) – Shipments of Nigerian Bonny Light crude were suspended on Thursday, after an outage prompted operator Shell to declare force majeure, but traders said a surplus of unsold cargoes was so large that differentials struggled to hold steady.
* Royal Dutch Shell’s Nigerian subsidiary said on Thursday it had declared force majeure on Bonny shipments with immediate effect. SPDC said in a statement that the shutdown of the Nembe Creek Trunk Line had prompted the force majeure.
* Exports of Bonny Light are expected to run at around 195,000 barrels per day (bpd) next month.
* Traders said that over the next two weeks only one tanker is scheduled to load Bonny crude.
* Shipments of Erha crude were also said to be delayed, but this had not yet had a knock-on upward effect on prices of other grades, two traders said.
* Oil prices are poised to break through $80 per barrel and Asia’s demand is at a record, pushing the cost of the region’s thirst for crude to $1 trillion this year, about twice what it was during the market lull of 2015/2016. PetroChina brought in to China the first cargo of its equity oil production from sub-salt Ribera project in Brazil, according to a report on Thursday by parent company CNPC. The 44,000-tonne shipment arrived at northeast Chinese port of Dalian this week after a 48-day voyage. Nigeria’s Trans-Forcados pipeline was shut down at the end of last week after a leak was found. Repairs are on-going. Roughly half a dozen of the 43 cargoes in the Angolan June programme were still available, traders said.
* No term allocations for Angolan were announced.
* About 25 cargoes of June-loading Nigerian cargoes were still available, although traders said around half of that total were held by Total and Shell.
* Indonesian Pertamina’s tender for July 8-10 delivery and July 23-27 delivery closed on Thursday.
* Pertamina has another tender for Aug. 1-10 or 16-20 or early September delivery closing on Monday.
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